Rishi Sunak: All the clues the chancellor has given that he intends to run for Tory leader

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

Boris Johnson’s premiership continues to go from bad to worse with five aides quitting in two days.

So inevitably, questions are being raised about who will replace him and Rishi Sunak is someone that many expect to challenge for the leadership in the event of a contest.

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

Reading between the lines, the chancellor may be – deliberately or otherwise – leaving a trail of clues about his ambitions to move into Number 10.

Mr Sunak was forced to address the growing cost of living crisis on Thursday when he appeared before the House of Commons to unveil the government’s plans for taking the “sting” out of soaring energy bills facing more than 22m British households from April.

Global Tech News Daily

Responding to Ofgem’s record-breaking 54 per cent hike in the energy price cap, which means almost £700 a year more being tacked onto the price of heating homes while wages remain stagnant and food, fuel and national insurance are all climbing, Mr Sunak announced a package of discounts and council tax rebates worth £350 per household to help out.

And yet, for all that, the chancellor’s “Black Thursday” was nowhere near so dark as that of his boss, Boris Johnson, who endured another torrid day in Westminster amid the resignation of four of his most senior aides and fresh calls for him to join them.

Global Tech News Daily

The prime minister remains dogged by the “Partygate” scandal even after the publication of senior civil servant Sue Gray’s heavily-redacted report into the rule-breaking Downing Street parties alleged to have taken place behind closed doors during lockdown .

Not least because the Metropolitan Police are currently investigating 12 such events and have 300 photographs and 500 documents in their possession related to the gatherings, courtesy of Ms Gray.

During a desperate attempt to defend himself in the House of Commons on Monday afternoon immediately after the Whitehall mandarin’s findings were published, Mr Johnson falsely accused his opposite number, Sir Keir Starmer, of being responsible for the failure to prosecute paedophile Jimmy Savile during his tenure as director of public prosecutions (DPP) between 2008 and 2013.

An official report at the time made clear that Sir Keir had played no part in decisions that prevented the prosecution of the prolific sex offender prior to his death in 2011 but Mr Starmer did issue an apology in his capacity as DPP on behalf of the Crown Prosecution Service.

The outcry over the smear has rumbled on all week, finally forcing Mr Johnson to issue a grovelling mea culpa and say: “Let’s be absolutely clear, I’m talking not about the leader of the opposition’s personal record when he was DPP and I totally understand that he had nothing to do personally with those decisions. I was making a point about his responsibility for the organisation as a whole. I really do want to clarify that because it is important.”

Rishi Sunak: All the clues the chancellor has given that he intends to run for Tory leader
© Provided by The Independent Boris Johnson is struggling – but will Rishi Sunak take advantage of his leader’s troubles? (Jonathan Brady/PA)

But that was not enough for his long-loyal adviser and director of policy Munira Mirza, who sent him a resignation letter saying the “scurrilous” Savile jibe was an “inappropriate and partisan reference to a horrendous case of child sex abuse” and told Mr Johnson: “You have let yourself down.”

Her exit was swiftly followed by three more, as the PM’s communications chief Jack Doyle, chief of staff Dan Rosenfield and principal private secretary Martin Reynolds all likewise jumped ship – with Downing Street hurriedly briefing that their exits were all part of a pre-planned shakeup of Mr Johnson’s inner circle.

Mr Sunak belatedly weighed into the Savile controversy on Thursday, telling a press conference: “Being honest, I wouldn’t have said it and I’m glad that the prime minister clarified what he meant.”

The remark is being interpreted as a clear attempt to draw a line between himself and the ailing PM, who continues to live in fear of Sir Graham Brady announcing that the 1922 Committee of Tory backbenchers has received the 54 letters of disapproval needed from MPs to trigger a no-confidence vote.

Earlier in the day, Mr Sunak declined an opportunity to categorically rule out running for the Conservative Party leadership in the event that an election was held to choose Mr Johnson’s successor, dismissing the question as a “hypothetical situation”.

Rishi Sunak: All the clues the chancellor has given that he intends to run for Tory leader
© Provided by The Independent Chancellor Rishi Sunak is seen by many as a favourite to succeed Mr Johnson (PA Wire)

Pressed by the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg about enthusiasm for his candidacy among his fellow Tories, the MP for Richmond in the Yorkshire Dales answered: “Well, that’s very kind of them to suggest that, but what I think people want from me is to focus on my job.

“I know a few of my colleagues have said that and they’ll have their reasons for doing that, but I don’t think that’s the situation we’re in.

“The prime minister has my full support. And what people want from me is to be getting on with my job, which is what I’m doing.”

Concerning Partygate, Mr Sunak admitted that he had been in the Cabinet Room for the birthday celebration organised by Mr Johnson’s wife Carrie on 19 June 2020 and commented: “I can appreciate people’s frustration. And I think it’s now the job of all of us in government and all politicians to restore people’s trust.”

While that saga first emerged before Christmas, with dribs and drabs of details seeping out through the media on an almost daily basis, it briefly fell silent as the rise of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 posed a threat to the festive season.

When cases gradually began to subside in the New Year, Partygate returned and speculation about Mr Johnson’s future returned, at which point Mr Sunak began to be discussed seriously as a potential successor and scored a 46 per cent approval rating over the PM in a YouGov poll of Conservatives published by Sky News on 9 January.

The chancellor then raised knowing eyebrows three days later when he chose to duck out of the explosive Prime Minister’s Questions at which Mr Johnson admitted he had attended the now-notorious “bring your own booze” No 10 garden party on 20 May 2020 while offering the extraordinary explanation that he “implicitly believed it was a work event”, attracting howls of derision from the opposition benches and much of the country.

Spending the day 200 miles away in Devon instead, Mr Sunak tweeted a brief message of encouragement later that evening, saying only that the PM had been “right to apologise” and calling for “patience”, a post that read as distinctly lukewarm and more than a little forced.

I’ve been on a visit all day today continuing work on our #PlanForJobs as well as meeting MPs to discuss the energy situation.

The PM was right to apologise and I support his request for patience while Sue Gray carries out her enquiry.

— Rishi Sunak (@RishiSunak) January 12, 2022

Since then, away from the cameras, he and foreign secretary Liz Truss have been widely reported as spending their time sounding out possible endorsements from their fellow Tories in the event that a leadership election should come to pass, with the chancellor accused of courting the “Pork Pie Plotters” on 23 January to secure their backing.

The name refers to a group of around 20 disaffected MPs who won their seats in so-called “red wall” constituencies in 2019, one of which is Melton in Leicestershire, held by Alicia Kearns and home of the celebrated Melton Mowbray pork pie.

Of Mr Sunak’s alleged conspiring with that cabal, a source told The Mail on Sunday he had sought to reassure them that the Treasury would remain generous with regional funding under his premiership.

“He didn’t mention the leadership, but he didn’t have to – he made clear that they would be safe in his hands,” the same source told the newspaper.

Rishi Sunak: All the clues the chancellor has given that he intends to run for Tory leader
© Provided by The Independent Mr Johnson wants to tough out Partygate but the hits keep on coming (PA)

On 29 January, The Independent reported that the chancellor considered Partygate “unsurvivable” for the PM and that he had “built a draft version of a campaign website, taking inspiration from his weekly No 11 newsletter, and developed a marketing strategy” in anticipation of an imminent leadership bid.

“There’s no question that Rishi and his team have got everything in place,” a source said, with “boy genius” adviser Cass Horowitz said to be readying the latest promotional push for the chancellor’s online brand.

For all his subsequent false modesty, Mr Sunak, one of the richest MPs in Westminster thanks to his marriage to Indian billionaire’s daughter Akshata Murthy, has been talked about as a future Conservative prime minister ever since his pre-hedge fund days as a politics, philosophy and economics student at Lincoln College, Oxford, according to Tatler.

He enjoyed an initial bounce in popularity in 2020 as the fresh face of the government’s bailout schemes in response to the first wave of the coronavirus – cheerily posing in restaurants to promote the short-lived “Eat Out to Help Out” initiative – and has managed to emerge relatively unscathed by Partygate (so far), leading him to remain firm favourite to succeed the PM with bookmakers.

The development of the cost of living crisis this year could seriously burn up much of that goodwill, however, so the present scandal engulfing Mr Johnson could represent his best chance of seizing power while his personal stock is at its highest – should he dare to take it.

From news to politics, travel to sport, culture to climate – The Independent has a host of free newsletters to suit your interests. To find the stories you want to read, and more, in your inbox, click here.

News Related

OTHER NEWS

New York Rangers get another comeback win to force Game 7 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

PITTSBURGH — How many times can the New York Rangers dig themselves into a hole and climb back out? At least one more, as of Friday night. The Blueshirts came ... Read more »

Wilson, balanced Aces cruise to 96-73 victory over Dream

COLLEGE PARK, Ga. (AP) — A’ja Wilson scored 15 points, Kelsey Plum had 14 points and 11 assists and the Las Vegas Aces rolled to a 96-73 victory over the ... Read more »

EXPLAINER: Why frustration lingers in Okinawa 50 years later

The Associated PressFILE – U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Mike Anglen of Turner, Ore., center, stands atop a cliff as Sgt. Bryan Wallace of Pikin, Ill., waits for his turn before ... Read more »

Astros beat Nationals 6-1 for 11th straight victory

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep and the Houston Astros extended their winning streak to ... Read more »

Kreider scores late, Rangers edge Pens 5-3 to force Game 7

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Chris Kreider’s long slap shot bounced over Louis Domingue and into the net with 1:28 left and the New York Rangers beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-3 on ... Read more »

Astros push winning streak to 11, roll past Nationals 6-1

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, and Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep to help the Houston Astros extend their winning ... Read more »

Moustakas, Drury power Reds to 8-2 victory over Pirates

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Mike Moustakas homered twice and Brandon Drury drove in four runs to break out of a slump and lead the resurgent Cincinnati Reds to an 8-2 victory ... Read more »

Peterson's bases-loaded walk lifts Brewers over Marlins 2-1

MIAMI (AP) — Jace Peterson walked against Anthony Bender with the bases loaded in the ninth inning and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Miami Marlins 2-1 Friday night. After starters ... Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during manager Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Ogunbowale, Gray help Wings rally past Mystics, 94-86

WASHINGTON (AP) — Arike Ogunbowale scored 27 points, Allisha Gray had 21 and the Dallas Wings overcame a 15-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Washington Mystics 94-86 on Friday night. ... Read more »

Resigning North Dakota senator led lawmakers in travel costs

The Associated PressFILE – North Dakota Sen. Ray Holmberg listens during a joint House and Senate Appropriations Committee meeting at the Capitol in Bismarck, N.D., on Jan. 7, 2009. Holmberg, ... Read more »

Residents in picturesque California county hit with gas prices topping $7 a gallon

A California county known for its spectacular mountains and proximity to Yosemite National Park has been paying the nation’s highest gas prices. Read more »

Boudreau to return as coach of Canucks next season

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Bruce Boudreau will return as coach of the Vancouver Canucks next season after helping to turn the struggling NHL club around as a midyear replacement. ... Read more »

New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern tests positive for COVID

On Location: May 13, 2022 Catch up on the developing stories making headlines.The Associated Press WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has tested positive for COVID-19 ... Read more »

Today in History for May 14th

Highlights of this day in history: Colonists go ashore in Virginia to set up Jamestown; Lewis and Clark begin to explore Louisiana Territory; Israel founded; Skylab launched; Movie producer George ... Read more »

Twitter CEO expects Elon Musk acquisition to close, addresses spending cuts

Musk is awaiting details supporting calculations that spam, fake accounts represent less than 5% of Twitter's users Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Renovated NYC museum shows indigenous perspectives

The American Museum of Natural History in New York City recently finished a major renovation of its exhibition on the native peoples of the northwest coast of North America. Curators ... Read more »

Police release 911 calls in Gilgo Beach case

A woman who disappeared in a beach community on New York’s Long Island more than a decade ago, sparking an investigation into a possible serial killer, said “there’s somebody after ... Read more »

Academy Awards set 2023 Oscars for March 12

The Associated PressFILE – Oscar statue on the red carpet at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Next year’s Academy Awards will ... Read more »

Actor Fred Ward, of 'Tremors,' 'The Right Stuff' fame, dies

The Associated PressFILE – Fred Ward, a cast member in “30 Minutes or Less,” poses at the premiere of the film in Los Angeles on Aug. 8, 2011. Ward, a ... Read more »

Judge refuses to drop elections suit against Trump, media

NEW YORK — A Colorado judge on Friday denied motions to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by an election systems worker against former President Donald Trump’s campaign, two of its ... Read more »

Q&A: Becky G unveils every side of herself in latest album

The Associated PressFILE – Becky G appears at the Oscars in Los Angeles on March 27, 2022. Beck G’s latest album is “Esquemas.” (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File) NEW YORK ... Read more »

North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak. Read more »

North Korea confirms 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea says 21 people died and 174,440 people were newly found with fever symptoms on Friday alone as the country scrambles to slow the spread ... Read more »

White Sox place Giolito on COVID list, activate Vaughn

The Chicago White Sox placed ace Lucas Giolito on the COVID-19 injured list and activated outfielder Andrew Vaughn following a rehab assignment with Triple-A Charlotte on Friday. Giolito began experiencing ... Read more »

Traded back and forth, Ford learns to live out of suitcase

NEW YORK (AP) — Mike Ford has learned to travel light — and quickly. Since the start of the season, the 29-year-old first baseman has played for Tacoma, San Francisco ... Read more »

Falcon 9 rocket launches Starlink satellites

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched 53 Starlink satellites to low-Earth orbit from California on Friday. (May 13) Read more »

Celtics' Robert Williams remains out for Game 6 vs. Bucks

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Boston forward/center Robert Williams missed his third straight game with an injured left knee as the Celtics tried to keep their season alive Friday night in Game ... Read more »

Padres sign Robinson Canó, plan to use him off the bench

ATLANTA (AP) — The San Diego Padres have signed veteran second baseman Robinson Canó to a major league contract and plan to use him as a left-handed bat off the ... Read more »

WNBA star's Russia detention extended by 1 month

The lawyer for WNBA star Brittney Griner says her pre-trial detention in Russia has been extended by one month. Alexander Boykov told The Associated Press the relatively short extension indicated ... Read more »

Louisiana justices toss COVID-related charges against pastor

Hundreds of thousands of Americans fighting long-haul symptoms from COVID-19 Dr. David Putrino from Mount Sinai Health System and COVID long-hauler Joel Fram discuss the long-term effects of the disease.The ... Read more »

Sandy Hook lawsuits against Alex Jones on track to resume

The Associated PressFILE – This Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, photo shows radio show host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones at Capitol Hill in Washington. The Sandy Hook families’ lawsuits against ... Read more »

Rockies' Bryant closer to return after cortisone shot

DENVER (AP) — Colorado Rockies outfielder Kris Bryant took swings in the cage Friday for the first time since he was sidelined with a sore back nearly three weeks ago ... Read more »

Mariners demote Jarred Kelenic to minors after poor start

NEW YORK (AP) — Rather than make his Citi Field debut against the team that traded him, Jarred Kelenic was demoted to Triple-A Tacoma by the Seattle Mariners on Friday ... Read more »

Biden: ASEAN partnership 'critical' in this moment

Looking to strengthen ties, President Joe Biden welcomes leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to Washington for the first time. “We’re launching a new era in U.S.-ASEAN relations,” ... Read more »

Phil Mickelson will not defend his title at next week's PGA Championship

Phil Mickelson caught lightning in a bottle last year at Kiawah Island, winning a major championship at 50 years of age. The fairways flooded, and the golf world stood and ... Read more »

Tennessee Titans' Malik Willis on Ryan Tannehill's mentorship comments: 'Everything is cool'

The Tennessee Titans didn’t take issue with Ryan Tannehill’s comments about mentoring third-round rookie Malik Willis. Willis and coach Mike Vrabel were asked about Tannehill’s scrutinized remarks following the first ... Read more »

Lawyers plan suit against Lufthansa over Jewish passengers

Lawyers for 26 passengers said Friday they told Lufthansa that they will sue the German airline for refusing to let members of a large group of Orthodox Jewish passengers board ... Read more »

Wild face offseason after yet another early ouster

While the Minnesota Wild were stacking up franchise records and securing the extra home game for the first round, general manager Bill Guerin carefully acknowledged a “great year” for the ... Read more »